Tuesday, February 28, 2017

For the Record...

This is my rebuttal to DTE Energy Vice Chairman, Steve Kurmas, who gave his verbal testimony to the Michigan Energy Policy Committee on February 21, 2017, regarding "smart" AMI meters.  His verbal testimony starts at about 1:15:00 in the above video.  He also submitted written testimony here.  

Mr. Kurmas wrote that over 65 million AMI (smart/electronic) meters have been installed across the US with no issues of health or security.

Regarding Health...

Of course utility companies are going to tell you that their new equipment is safe.  That is what they have been told by the manufacturers.  The manufacturers claim the equipment is safe because it falls within certain FCC guidelines.  They don't mention that the FCC is not a health regulatory agency, they are not protecting the public's health, and the FCC guidelines have been under attack for a number of years.  

Mr. Kurmas also did not mention that the United States is one of three countries that allows about 100 times more outdoor pulsed radiofrequency radiation than most the rest of the world, and that never before in recorded history have over 2 million transmitting public utility meters been installed in Michigan.  So we, and other states fitted with electronic public utility meters, are literally functioning as test markets on health effects.

Image from the Environmental Health Trust

Mr. Kurmas also did not mention all the people who testified to ill health effects after smart or electronic meter installation, at the 2014 Michigan OversightCommittee Hearing.  

Since then, many more Michigan citizens have come forward, testifying to adverse health effects after electronic meter installation, including myself.

Mr. Kurmas also wrote, "the average cell phone produces as much as 100,000 times more RF than an AMI meter."  What he did not tell you is: That statement has been challenged by a Professor of Nuclear Policy, Daniel Hirsch.  Hirsh states that when corrected for duty-cycle and whole-body exposure, "the cumulative whole body exposure from a Smart Meter at 3 feet appears to be approximately two orders of magnitude higher than that of a cell phone, rather than two orders of magnitude lower." 

As of February of this year, the World Health Organization updated its "Cancer Fact Sheet" page to include non-ionizing radiation as a risk factor under the category "Reducing the Cancer Burden".  Electronic "smart" meters emit pulsed non-ionizing radiation continuously.

Traditional analog meters do not expose us to pulsed non-ionizing radiation, a possible human carcinogen.

Regarding Security...

In March of 2016, Computer Weekly (dot) com posted an article written by Bryan Glick, titled "Government warned of smart meter security threat back in 2012."  The article concludes with a call for the "smart" meter project to be "'halted, altered or scrapped' immediately to avert an expensive IT failure."

Another article, from Security Week (dot) com, written by Eduard Kovacs in January of this year, is titled "Smart Meters Pose Security Risks to Consumers, Utilities..." and begins with, "Serious vulnerabilities in smart electricity meters continue to expose both consumers and electric utilities to cyberattacks."

In his verbal testimony, Mr. Kurmas admitted that the information gathered from a smart meter is akin to the information you would get if you stood in someone's yard right next to their analog gas, electric, and/or water meter.  He did not say that by doing so, you would be able to tell if someone got up in the middle of the night, slept-in, or even if someone was home, late getting home, or on vacation.

Traditional analog public utility meters do not make our homes and our privacy vulnerable.

Regarding Canada...

Mr. Kurmas also stated that in 2012, Canada attained 100% AMI installation.

What Mr. Kurmas did not tell you was that in 2014, SaskPower of Canada pulled 105,000 smart meters after "eight unexplained fires associated with the units."

And, in 2016, Canada had to "pull the plug" on over 36,000 rural smart meters because of signal issues.  At that time, Hydro One of Canada reported that 6% of their one million customers were having billing issues.

Canada's auditor-general stated there are "few benefits for the hefty cost" of smart meters.

In his 14 years of being with the Fire Department, Fire Chief Duane Roddy of Oscoda Township, had never himself witnessed a traditional analog meter fire.  Yet, as he testified in front of you (Michigan's Energy Policy Committee) on February 21st, within 36 hours of installation, the smart meter on his cabin "arced" and almost caught his cabin on fire.  

"Thirty-six hours after installation, I had a fire myself," testified Fire Chief Roddy, 
"we're seeing... the fire is at the meter."  

Was that a blessing of disclosure in disguise?

Availability and maintenance... 

Mr. Kurmas also stated that analog meters were not manufactured any longer.  There are a couple of different websites I know of where anyone can order an analog electric meter.  So they are available.  And if the law of supply and demand is true, the supply will follow the demand.

Mr. Kurmas also stated that traditional analog meters needed to be maintained.  However, he didn't mention that traditional analog meters have a life expectancy of double (or more) that of AMI smart meters.  So they will either be checking traditional analog meters, or totally replacing AMI smart meters, every few years.  Is that more "green", or less?


Friday, February 24, 2017

Are You An Anti-Vaxxer?

Just to be clear, I am NOT an anti-vaxxer.  

What I AM is a SAFE-vaxxer.

When I was leaving the town hall meeting yesterday, a woman stopped me when she saw my "Utility Meter Choice" name tag.

"Are you an anti-vaxxer, also?" she asked.

"No, I'm a safe vaxxer...  You're not the first person to ask me that.  Why do you want to know?"

"Well, because anti-vaxxers believe in pseudo-science, and I wanted to know if you believed in pseudo-science", she said.  "Are you a scientist?"


"Well I am, and vaccines save lives."

"I'm sure they do!  I just know that when my daughters were babies (in the 80's) they received just a handful of vaccines, and did just fine..."

"This is supposed to be a dialogue between two people", she interrupted.

"Yes, and I'm trying to tell you my experience, but you interrupted me.  Children never got more than three vaccinations at one time, and none that I know of had issues, and I knew a lot of mothers with small children.  Today, maybe half a dozen vaccines are given at a time, and some children don't do so well.  In fact, I once heard an ICU nurse say that when preemies come in for vaccinations, they prepare a room because they know the preemie will need to be admitted."

"They don't vaccinate preemies", she insisted, "and the amount of toxins in a vaccination is minuscule.  Babies are more likely poisoned by the environment than by vaccinations.  And besides, nurses don't have much education."

Ha!  Try telling that to an ICU nurse.  

At this point she mentioned the flu vaccination.  I told her that I'd never gotten a flu vaccination, and it had been maybe 20 years since I had the flu.

"Well you could be carrying the virus and infecting people.  You could have killed babies!"

"Killed babies?!?  Aren't you more likely to infect another when you have the vaccination and are then carrying the virus?"

"That's it", she said, "you ARE an anti-vaxxer!"  She then turned around and stomped off.

I was stunned.  Dumbfounded.  And a touch amused by this exchange.

Later in the day, I relayed my experience to one of my daughters.

"You know, mom, they sometimes plant shills and trolls at those types of things."

Hmm... I may have met my first, live, town hall troll.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Michigan: A Call For Help, Please!

US Representative Justin Amash gave a town hall meeting here in Battle Creek today, and I attended.  He began by speaking about, among other things, George Washington's warning that political parties will divide the country, and a divided country would be easier to manipulate.  He also mentioned protecting people's rights.

Rep. Amash is a member of the Fourth Amendment Caucus, which made me hopeful he would be at least open to my comments and question.

"Justin A. Amash is an American attorney and Republican member of Congress.  In January 2011, he began serving as the U.S. Representative for Michigan's 3rd congressional district."  (From Wikipedia)

When Rep. Amash called on me, I said:
Many people here in Michigan, including myself, have already become ill from wireless technology, including new electronic, sometimes called "smart", public utility meters.  In fact, there's a Bill in the State House, HB 4220, that will allow public utility customers the choice to keep an analog meter without having to pay extra to do so, which means there's growing public and political interest in this topic. 
S. 19 Mobile Now Act, and H.Res. 53 (has a long name) Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that in order to continue aggressive growth in the Nation's telecommunications and technology industries, the United States Governmnet should "Get Out of the Way and Stay Out of the Way" ... both S. 19 and H.Res. 53 will enable telecommunication companies to continue rapid deployment of wireless technology infrastructure that has not been proven safe and has in fact been making some very sick. 
There is a growing epidemic of illness from wireless technology that is for the most part being ignored. 
S. 19 and H.Res. 53 will further ignore this growing epidemic. 
Please tell me where you stand on these issues.
Rep. Amash was not familiar with either of these two pieces of legislation, and said he was not convinced there were health effects, and that the studies didn't show it.

I'm not sure what "studies" he's read, but I will most certainly get him the NON-industry funded studies that more often than not, show harmful effects from wireless technology.

Some people in the audience (and all the seats were full, plus there were people standing) began shouting while Amash was answering me:  
"Do your research!"
I had some support in the audience.  So I approached Rep. Amash again and said, 
Never before in the history of Michigan have we had over 2 million smart and electronic public utility meters installed.
He repeated that he wasn't convinced there were any health issues.

This is my call for help:

If you live in Michigan's 3rd Congressional District, please contact US Rep. Amash and voice your concern about the rapid deployment of wireless technology infrastructure, despite a growing health crisis of electrosensitivity.

HERE is Rep. Amash's contact information.

Thank you!  Bless us all!

For more information about electrosensitivity, please see:

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Just the Facts, Man

In response to this news article:  Michigan 'smart meter' hearing elicits fears, this is what I wrote to the Editor of the Detroit News and the author of the article:

Dear Editor and Mike Gerstein (writer),

"Studies" may have shown our "concerns are unfounded", however experience has not. 

Michigan has never before had over 2 million so-called "smart" and/or electronic public utility meters installed.  Ever.  So logically, experience should override "studies". 

And there's a big difference between experience, and fears.  Take a look at the testimonies of people who attended the 2014 Michigan Oversight Committee hearing on smart meters.  They were talking about experience, for the most part.  Not fears. 

As was stated at yesterday's Energy Committee hearing, industry-funded studies predominantly "don't show any associated health risks."  While NON-industry-funded studies DO show "associated health risks."  So who are you going to believe?

DTE's opt-out fees are HIGHER than you reported, and even the digital opt-out meter collects granulated data that is downloaded by DTE when they read the meter. 

And Kurmas admitted that it was like "standing next to their old analog meter."  Some consider this an invasion of privacy, that the utility company will be able to know exactly how much electricity one is using, and exactly when.

You wrote, "it's not clear if the meters pose an increased cancer risk."  So who is the utility company to determine if I want to subject myself to a possible increased risk of cancer? 

I can choose to expose myself to the radiofrequency radiation of a cell phone, or not.  I can choose to expose myself to the potentially carcinogenic effects of cigarette smoke, or not.  I would like to RETAIN the RIGHT to choose my (potential) carcinogens, and smart meters emit a potential carcinogen. 

The "older equipment" lasts at least twice as long as the new equipment, smart meters, so when utility companies talk about "maintaining older equipment," they're talking about LESS maintenance than smart meters.

HB 4220 would not only protect my property rights, it would protect my privacy and my right to choose the carcinogens I'm exposed to.

Jeanine Deal

Battle Creek, MI

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